I like to think of our library as the heart of the school building – not just because of its physical location, but also because of the role that it plays in the day-to-day life of the school. With huge picture windows, artwork and a magnificent quote board, it is an aesthetically pleasing space. It is also a center of collaboration, inquiry, and reading for pleasure. Perhaps more so than any other place within the main building, people gravitate toward this space.
For a school where words matter, we can definitely say that books matter too. To this end, the library has an impressive fiction room filled with a wide variety of works. If your child has a favorite author that interests him or her, this is a great place to look. From time to time, Ms. Hamm arranges “Book Tastings,” featuring selections displayed on tables with fancy tablecloths. Classes visit, by invitation. And, after an introduction, students mill around the room, sampling various “courses” of texts prepared for them, based on author style, genre, or interest. On other occasions, the comfortable chairs and couches and nooks of the main library room are filled by fifth graders and their 12th grade reading buddies. As a part of a program designed by two English teachers: Ms. Mujal and Ms. Seid, younger and older students are encouraged to connect with each other while exploring high-interest literature.
Our nonfiction room features a variety of high-quality research texts arranged by area of study. Ms. Hamm uses this room to teach students about research and also hosts smaller book groups. So far this year, Ms. Hamm has spent more than 200 hours working with different classes in varying grades. She has partnered with teachers to create in-depth research projects that familiarize students with our print collections and media resources, and how to use them to find information.
We are excited about new books on math and statistics that have arrived in time for Math and Statistics Awareness Month (April). Ms. Hamm has also set up a remarkable collection of Shakespearian works and activities just in time for the Bard’s birthday this month. And, to cap it off, with the help of Physics teacher Ms. Shapiro, and Middle School Science Department Chair, Ms. Dobler, Ms. Hamm has created a Makerpsace, or lab for creating physical objects, including a 3D Printer.